ENDA May Not Get A Vote In House

Here’s what John Boehner’s spokesperson had to say

(Politico) “The Speaker believes this legislation will increase frivolous litigation and cost American jobs, especially small business jobs,” Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said in an email Monday.

That’s one of the problems Republicans had when ENDA was passed in 2007, when Democrats owned both the House and Senate. Here’s the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent, who conveniently forgets to include some information

Today John Boehner declared he opposes the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and senior House GOP aides said the bill is unlikely to get a House vote – putting its passage in doubt.

So perhaps it’s worth recalling some historical context: Two well known House Republican leaders voted for ENDA the last time it was put to a House vote, in 2007: Rep. Paul Ryan, the GOP’s vice presidential candidate in 2012, and Rep. Greg Walden, who as NRCC chair is in charge of protecting the House GOP majority.

The Democrats stripped out the provisions regarding LGBTs (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered), ie, “gender identity”, for the 2007 attempt, which stalled in the Democrat led Senate, after first dying in a House committee because of the “gender identity” provisions. Barney Frank submitted separate legislation on the issue. They added the provisions back in for the 2009 vote, which failed again, even though Dems still controlled the House and Senate, and also had a Democrat president who said he supported the legislation.

In fairness, in those same interviews, both Ryan and Walden opposed the inclusion of protections for transgender Americans. And that protection is in the current version set to pass the Senate. But Boehner’s statement grounds House GOP opposition to today’s version of ENDA in the notion that it will lead to frivolous lawsuits and kill jobs, not in transgender protections.

What ENDA is about, as I noted yesterday, is an attempt to change the discussion away from the utter failure of Obamacare and get back to assaulting Republicans. If it couldn’t pass in 2009 and 2010 with full Democrat control of Congress and the White House, they knew it wouldn’t go through now. This is a political game.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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